February 24, 2015
MADISON -- The Art Oehmcke Hatchery in Oneida County and Gov. Tommy G. Thompson Hatchery in Washburn County will receive important upgrades under plans approved by the state building commission.
The fish hatcheries, operated by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, raise muskies, walleye and suckers.
Dave Giehtbrock, fisheries culture section chief, said the $4.6 million in improvements at the Art Oehmcke facility will include equipment to disinfect the Madeline Lake and Clear Lake building water supply. The project will modify the Clear Lake pump station, filter the Clear Lake building supply, renovate the Madeline Lake intake screen and replace the Madeline Lake micro screen filtration systems.
Fish rearing operations there also will benefit from an egg disinfection room and new rearing ponds.
The $2.5 million worth of improvements at the Tommy Thompson facility will include a new automatic intake screen cleaning system, a new filtration system for all incoming water and a new disinfection system for incoming water in the building. The money also will repair levees and settled pond areas and add a new bio-secure egg disinfection room in the hatchery building. A truck and equipment disinfection station will be built in an existing storage building.
Giehtbrock said the investment represents an important step forward for the hatcheries, which help sustain $1.5 billion in direct state angler expenditures each year, according to the American Sportfishing Association. Following a bidding process, work on the projects is expected to begin in May with completion of the new ponds at Art Oehmcke by mid-summer.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Dave Giehtbrock, DNR fisheries culture section chief, 608-266-8229, David.Giehtbrock@Wisconsin.gov ; Jennifer Sereno, DNR communications, 608-770-8084, Jennifer.Sereno@wisconsin.gov